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Posted on: August 22, 2023

Dysart-Kendall American Legion Post 29 names Firefighter of the Year

City Council and Post 29 members pose with 2023 Firefighter of the Year Capt. Roger Whisnant

Dysart-Kendall American Legion Post 29 named Captain Roger Whisnant as City of Lenoir Firefighter of the Year during the City Council meeting Tuesday, Aug. 18, 2023.

Dysart-Kendall American Legion Post 29 created the Firefighter and Officer of the Year Award to recognize local emergency services members and thank them for their contributions to keep the community safe. Four American Legion members attended the meeting to present the awards including Post 29 Commander Joe Osbourne, Post 29 First Vice Commander Wesley Woods, Post 29 Historian and Past Commander Irv Eurto, and American Legion Division 5 Commander and Chaplain Wayne Mihelich.

Capt. Whisnant started working for the City of Lenoir Fire Department in 2001. During his nearly 22 years of service, Capt. Whisnant has moved up the ranks from Firefighter I to Firefighter II, Inspector, Instructor, Lieutenant, and Captain. He currently serves as one of the Captains on the Ladder Company at Fire Station 2.

"His attitude and work ethic are outstanding," Fire Chief Norman Staines said. "He understands what commitment and leadership are and is constantly striving to improve himself and the department."

In addition to serving at the City of Lenoir Fire Department, Capt. Whisnant is very involved in the community. He helps teach emergency training at various fire departments in Caldwell and Wilkes Counties, and he has served as Head Baseball / Softball coach at the Happy Valley Optimist Club for the past eight years. He also served as the Assistant Baseball / Softball coach of Hibriten District in 2021 and the Western Carolina Warriors. He also teaches Sunday School at Piney Grove Baptist Church.

"Capt. Whisnant definitely deserves this recognition, and we appreciate Post 29 for continuing to recognize our firefighters and other emergency services personnel in Lenoir and Caldwell County," Chief Staines said.

Capt. Whisnant said he appreciated the recognition.

"I do thank everyone very much," Capt. Whisnant said. "I thank my department, my chief, and the people I work with. I try to do my best, and I thank you a lot."

Post 29 also recognizes the Sheriff's Deputy of the Year and the Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) of the Year.

Dysart-Kendall American Legion Post 29 named Captain Roger Whisnant as City of Lenoir Firefighter of the Year during the City Council meeting Tuesday, Aug. 18, 2023. Pictured from left: Post 29 First Vice Commander Wesley Woods, Councilman Jonathan Beal, Mayor Pro Tem Crissy Thomas, Post 29 Commander Joe Osbourne, Post 29 Historian and Past Commander Irv Eurto, Councilman Ralph Prestwood, Capt. Roger Whisnant, City Manager Scott Hildebran, Mayor Joe Gibbons, Councilman Ike Perkins, NC American Legion Division 5 Commander and Chaplain Wayne Mihelich, Councilman Todd Perdue, and Councilman David Stevens.

Capt. Roger Whisnant's Firefighter of the Year plaque.

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